FORMER police officer Eric Wheldon, 61, of Pinewood Court, Haywards Heath, cheated benefits staff more than 300 times as he illegally claimed nearly £33,000.
Wheldon, whose life took a downward spiral after he began an office-based job, was jailed at Hove Crown Court on ten "specimen charges".
The charges related to false claims between February and October 2000.
But Judge Anthony Scott-Gall also heard that Wheldon had asked for 304 other fraudulent claims to be considered, although Wheldon was not formally charged with them.
He was jailed for nine months.